Sunday, April 26, 2009

Waterlo Marathon , Sunday April 26 2009

Drum roll please ...... and I award myself a Silver Medal . Garmin time for my first Marathon is 3:48:16. Not sure of my placing yet as results haven't been posted!

Race day started at 3:00 am after 6 hours of sleep! Besides putting a pot of coffee on I fired up the PC to check the weather. It was going to be wet , either +20C or +10C. No one was saying for sure ... how to dress! Did my usual breakfast , Oatmeal , OJ, English Muffin with PB and a Coffee. Jumped in the hot tub with another brew and I was off at 5:15. Temp leaving home was 6C , upon arrival in Waterloo at 6:45 it was 14 ... would the cold or warm air win out. Started with my Shell over top of a compression shirt , in an hour the temp had dropped to 11C and a stiff breeze accompanied the change. I added a semi fitted long sleeve tech shirt and I was comfortable , after all you can always take it off.

Race started at 08:00 , there was a pretty good crowd for the full ... probably close to 150 folks. First few K were through the city , 1K in a fellow in front of me jumped over the 1K marker. All I could think was he is going to regret that little energy outburst later. I was rock'in to my ipod and trying to run as relaxed and efficiently as I could. My pace goal was 5:00/K for as long as I could, no pace band required! I quickly settled into the race , first 3K were 5:08, 4:46, 5:02 . At 3K sweat strarted rolling down my face , the Shell came off and it was tied around my waist. Next mile stone was at 45min, did my first Gel , avg pace was 5:04! The wind was really strong from around 8K to 20K we were either into it or it was at a 45 degree angle. I was comfortable , wet but not sweating too much. After the Gel at 9K I caught myself speeding up to a 4:36 pace .. put the breaks on that turned out to be a 4:52 pace for that K!
9 through 18K were uneventful ... nice country roads , not too many hills. I concentrated on being relaxed and efficient and tried to breath deep and easy. Gelled again at 19K , 1:36 in , again I picked the next K up a bit... 17K was 5:08 , 18K 5:07, 19K 5:10 20K 4:58. At around the half way point we changed directions and headed down a 5K Gravel Road... wind at out backs. Picked up the pace a bit , 21K 5:06, 22K 4:52, 23K 4:57 , my average pace dropped to 5:03 , I started to think that maybe a 3:3X:XX may be possible. From 24-30K I started to slow a bit , 24 was 5:18, 25 5:10 , 26 5:16, 27 5:43. 27K I did another Gel and then had my first aid station stop , I had only consumed 700ml of Gator Aid that I was carrying. I filled my bottle back up , half water/half accelerade. After the brief aid station stop and the Gel I was able to pick it up a bit and 28K was done in 5:14. I was really starting to feel fatigued and continued to fade , slowly but steadily. 29K was 5:19 , 30K I cramped for a few minute , rather acute but short lived and I ended up with a 5:51 pace. The next 12K would see 6:00 +/- 10 second pace .... it was really hard but managed to push on and keep running all be it at a pace 1 minute slower then the planned 5:00 At around 33-34K we were back into the wind and it was stronger and I was cold. I put my Shell back on and this really helped me to be more comfortable in the last stretch. The last 8K were down a really busy road . I felt at risk with the wind pushing me around and cars whizzing by at 80K with only a few feet of clearance. I could have moved to the gravel shoulder but it was really soft due to all the rain and besides I wasn't up to the extra effort. I may think twice before I do this run again because of this hazard. The other 34K was awesome , little to no traffic and scenic. An out and back would have been better!

Things I would do different to improve time would be....
1) Slow the pace down a little , say 5:10.. anything left the last 5K giver er!
2) Increase my weekly long runs to 35K. Max has been 25-30K
3) I have dropped from 183 to 176 lbs , I have would like to get to 170lbs ... hold the beer!

This was my first Marathon , I have done 2 50K Tails races but the road Marathon is a totally different beast. The Marathon is a cross between a speed and an endurance event ... now I understand! I am looking forward to doing the forty two two again , probably Socita Waterfront in the fall!


Frank Vander Meulen said...

Way to go Ron! Someone said that the only goal you should have for your first marathon is to finish.

I was thinking of you yesterday, wondering how it was going, and am glad to hear you persevered to the end.

I did 12.5 km Saturday, in 62:52. Not sure about 10km in 45min in Mount Forest...I'll just try to keep up with you! See you Thursday.

Richard said...

Hi Ron! Great report on the race. Thanks a lot. Congratulations on your time too. I like the "hot tub with another brew" idea, I might try that sometimes. Ciao,